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  • « Suddenly Sarah | Main | What was he thinking? »

    August 30, 2008

    Reckless and hypocritical

    Posted by: Andoni

    Sarah_palin Call me shocked but not surprised by Senator John McCain's pick of Alaska governor Sarah Palin as his vice presidential nominee.

    Palin would be a heartbeat away from the oldest president ever elected to a first term, and one who has had the most malignant form of skin cancer times two. Malignant melanoma can re-appear any time, any where, even years after a "cure."

    So let's get right to the readiness to be president issue. It is arguable that Palin has the same experience Barack Obama had 18 months ago when he first declared for the presidency. However, since then we have all watched Obama grow tremendously. For the past 18 months he has been vetted by the national media, tested by 20 debates, and been approved by millions of voters in all 50 states. He ran one of the most sophisticated and successful campaigns in history. You could say that his character has been tested and forged over the past 18 months by running the grueling minefield our country demands of future presidents and passing with flying colors. 

    Even if Palin is equal in experience to what Obama was 18 months ago when he began his campaign, McCain has chosen someone who 99% of America does not know and there are only 67 days to put her through the tests to become familiar with her and to determine if she is ready. This is impossible and demonstrates a carelessness on McCain's part. The fact that he only met her twice and is now vouching for her to all of America is reckless. If he had known Palin for years before he pulled her out of a hat and then vouched for her to America that she was ready, that would be an entirely different story.

    Furthermore, just as politicians criticize an activity that we later find out they themselves are doing (think Larry Craig, Elliot Spitzer), McCain now is a member of that club. For months he has been condemning Obama on the grounds that he is inexperienced, not ready, and untested. Now McCain does the opposite of what his words would indicate, and picks someone with less experience and readiness than Obama has. (By her own admission, she knows nothing about the Iraq War, and doesn't even know what the vice president does.) In addition, McCain attacked Obama for not choosing Hillary Clinton, the person who criticized him the most during the primaries, saying Obama could not stand to run with a critic of his because the criticism was true. Guess what? Mitt Romney criticized McCain most during the primary season and was the leading candidate for V.P. until the last minute. Could McCain not stand to take as his veep the candidate who was his sharpest critic? Another hypocritical moment for McCain.

    McCain has been described as a maverick over the years. I think this is a euphemism for "loose cannon" or even reckless, just as you would describe a spoiled brat child as precocious if you want to pretty it up a bit. Remember McCain is the guy who does whatever he wants regardless of the rules or conventions. He was a hell boy in the Naval Academy, breaking all the rules just to break them and barely graduated. Some think he graduated only because he came from a family of admirals and privilege. During pilot training he crashed 3 planes and was considered one of the worst pilots ever by his instructor. And in both his marriages, he has exhibited reckless, oh make that maverick, behavior.

    People don't really change that much over the years. You may wish to use the term maverick to describe McCain. However, I think reckless or loose canon is a better description --- and this latest episode makes me conclude that he really is not fit to be president.

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    Comments

    1. Strict Scrutiny on Aug 30, 2008 11:03:34 AM:

      The fact that he only met her twice and is now vouching for her to all of America is wreckless. If he had known Palin for years before he pulled her out of a hat and then vouched for her to America that she was ready, that would be an entirely different story.

      Yup. A previous commentor called Palin's nomination McCain's "Harriet Miers" moment, which I think is a very apt comparison. At least Bush could say that he'd known Harriet Miers for years and could personally vouch for her. McCain met Palin only once or twice and chose her based on her record, which is slim. This demonstrates a lack of judgment.

      I understand that he wanted to "shake things up," but still. Connecticut Governor Jodi Rell would have been a far better choice if he wanted a female V.P. with exective experience. Not only does Rell have more executive experience than Palin, but she is more of a "maverick" than Palin is. For instance, over the objection of several members of the CT Republican Party, including the state party chairman, Rell signed the CT Civil Union bill that gave same-sex couples the 300+ rights that CT grants to married heterosexual couples. And she did this without being forced to do so by a court.

      Plus she signed a campaign finance reform into law, which McCain supported.

      Rell also would have been a better choice because it might have put CT's 7 electoral votes in play in the election. McCain was already going to get AK's 3 votes, so Palin's choice doesn't help him there.

      I suppose Rell is too pro-gay to be viable, even though she is immensely popular in CT, has mostly conservative ideas, and has more experience than Palin. What a pity.

    1. Double T on Aug 30, 2008 2:34:21 PM:

      McCain is really in trouble.

      The person he lines up to be one heartbeat away from the most powerful office in the world is Alaska governor Sarah Palin.

      She's under investigation and she's a puppet for Big Oil.

      This is the best woman the Republican Party could find?

      How truly sad.

      All Hail the Chief.
      cue music.
      in walks Obama.

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Aug 30, 2008 9:08:50 PM:

      She's under investigation and she's a puppet for Big Oil.

      The investigation is into why she fired a public safety commissioner -- who inexplicably had not fired a state trooper who had threatened to kill his father-in-law, was caught driving drunk, and who had tasered his eleven-year-old son.

      And as for "puppet for Big Oil", that merely demonstrates how ignorant the Obama campaign is in writing up its talking points.

      Unless, of course, Obama is planning to state publicly that putting into place a tax increase on oil and gas companies makes you "a puppet for Big Oil".


    1. North Dallas Thirty on Aug 31, 2008 12:19:46 PM:

      Oh, and Andoni?

      He ran one of the most sophisticated and successful campaigns in history.

      Right.

      And at the Las Vegas debate, Obama said he relies on his staff to neutralize his disorganization, which he said was his greatest weakness.

      “I ask my staff never to hand me paper until two seconds before I need it, because I will lose it,” he said, drawing laughter from the audience. “I've got to have somebody around me who is keeping track of that stuff. And that's not trivial; I need to have good people in place who can make sure that systems run. That's what I've always done, and that's why we run not only a good campaign but a good U.S. Senate office.”

      Clinton seized on Obama’s comments to question his ability to hold government accountable, invoking Harry Truman’s mantra “The buck stops here” to contrast her approach.

      Obama had said earlier in the debate that “being president is not making sure that schedules are being run properly or the paperwork is being shuffled effectively. It involves having a vision for where the country needs to go.”

    1. JC Allen on Aug 31, 2008 3:42:26 PM:

      She's a Reagan conservative who will get the conservative democrat vote as well as most of the women's. She's an excellent pick.

    1. Strict Scrutiny on Aug 31, 2008 5:33:15 PM:

      I seriously doubt she will get most of the women's vote (no more than 1/2, if that) and I think Joe Biden will be competitive with Palin for the Reagan Democrat vote.

      But also, consider this -- Reagan was a 2-term governor (more experience) and was a gifted communicator. Palin doesn't have that level of experience and so far she hasn't demonstrated the same level of charisma. I guess we'll see in the weeks and months to come.

      This was a risky gamble and I don't think it will pay off.

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